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Meaning at Work

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"Some people die at 25 and aren't buried until 75." Ben Franklin

It’s not enough to “have purpose.” Leaders must create a culture that promotes being purposeful.

1.

Regularly show people how their work benefits others
2. Help people tie their everyday tasks to a bigger purpose worth committing to
3. Make contribution goals more important than achievement goals

(Source: How to Connect Your People to Purpose and Why It’s Vital) How to Connect Your People to Purpose and Why It's Vital - Zach Mercurio. If you’ve read the many workplace psychology studies and whitepapers published over the past decade, you probably know that a sense of purpose in work is important. Studies show that when people believe that their work matters, they’re four times more likely to be engaged, are more motivated, learn faster, and are more fulfilled. But do you know how to activate purpose and connect your people to it? If you’re unsure, you have company. A recent survey of over 502 leaders revealed that while 79% of leaders think that connecting their people to an inspiring purpose is critical to success, just 27% say they regularly enact purpose when working with their teams.

Closing the gap between the stimulating idea of purpose and its transformative practice to drive employee engagement, motivation, and fulfillment may be the most important task of modern organizational leaders. Here’s why. Why Purpose in Work Matters Now The human yearning for purpose in work isn’t a new idea, it’s a universal human desire. The Future of Work Must Be Meaningful.

Are You Leading With Purpose? Is purpose a vibrant force that drives why and how you do things in your organization? When purpose is central to what you do, studies have found that you’re more likely to keep your people, attract and engage your customers, and increase your returns to shareholders tenfold. However, a recent study found that while nearly eighty percent of leaders believe that purpose is central to their success, only a third believe it is used to guide decision-making processes in their workplaces. How can this be turned around? “We each have an underlying need and desire for purpose in our lives,” said Zach Mercurio from Colorado State University when I interviewed him recently. “We need to understand the usefulness and contribution our actions make for others.” Zach suggests that as being connected to your purpose can be one of the most compelling motivators of behaviors and attitudes, it can act as an invisible leader in our workplaces. So how can you lead with purpose?

Shared Values. Know-How. Motivation at Work. Self-Motivation. Self-Achievement. Cooperation Dynamics. How to Find Fulfilling Work. Mindfulness shows us that we’re not “destined to respond the same way emotionally to the same old triggers,” science columnist Sharon Begley writes in Mindful.

Perhaps the same can apply to our work life: we’re not destined to stay in the same job that our teenage- or college-aged selves chose for us. This animation from The School of Life suggests that finding fulfilling work takes reflection, some mental digging, and giving ourselves permission to do this kind of inner questing (you’ll want to block out some weekends). They offer six tips on how to find fulfilling work: 1) Accept that you’re not alone in feeling confusion about careers.

Many choices can lead to anxiety, or prevent us from making a choice at all. We can acknowledge that fear and confusion are present, but still keep calm and carry on. 2) Before knowing what you want to do, know yourself. Most of us don’t have a calling. Even the most off-beat items will contribute to your future work path. 3) Sit on It. 4) Try Something.

How to Find Fulfilling Work. “If one wanted to crush and destroy a man entirely, to mete out to him the most terrible punishment,” wrote Dostoevsky, “all one would have to do would be to make him do work that was completely and utterly devoid of usefulness and meaning.” Indeed, the quest to avoid work and make a living of doing what you love is a constant conundrum of modern life. In How to Find Fulfilling Work (public library) — the latest installment in The School of Life’s wonderful series reclaiming the traditional self-help genre as intelligent, non-self-helpy, yet immensely helpful guides to modern living, which previously gave us Philippa Perry’s How to Stay Sane and Alain de Botton’s How to Think More About Sex — philosopher Roman Krznaric (remember him?) Explores the roots of this contemporary quandary and guides us to its fruitful resolution: Never have so many people felt so unfulfilled in their career roles, and been so unsure what to do about it.

Curie was absolutely committed to her career.

Books

Podcasts. Executive Qualities. Calling. Purpose. Meaning. Burn-out.